Rare lizard found this week in the Viscaya unit of our Naturetrek Reserves

P1030113

Riama meleagris in our Naturetrek/Viscaya Reserve. Note the iridescence on the scales. Click to enlarge. Photo: Juan Pablo Reyes/EcoMinga.

A few days ago our reserve manager, herpetologist Juan Pablo Reyes, was working with community members in our Naturetrek/Viscaya Reserve a few kilometers north of the town of Banos (Tungurahua province) when he accidentally encountered a lizard he had never seen before. It proved to be Riama meleagris, a species that has  previously been recorded from only two other sites, both in Tungurahua province. Both those other localities are now now highly disturbed, and the species is classified as Near Threatened by the IUCN. Our reserve is the only protected area where this species has been found; it is good to know that it will be protected from deforestation here at least.

P1030012

Rialma meleagris in our reserve. Click to enlarge. Photo: Juan Pablo Reyes/EcoMinga.

P1030047

The former landowner, Jorge Peña, and his family, who now help us care for the reserve. Click to enlarge. Photo: Juan Pablo Reyes/EcoMinga.

Lou Jost, Fundacion EcoMinga

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s